Skorpa and Svinøy, Aug 23 2016

As off the beaten track as you can get in Norway…

Peaks visited:

Peak Height PF Municipality Location Link
Keipen 431m 431m Herøy GPX WCP
Svinøy 40m 40m Herøy
Svinøy Fyr (lighthouse)

When my colleague Vidar told me that he would take our friends Olav and Torill by boat out to the desolate island Skorpa this afternoon, I changed all plans for the afternoon and invited myself onboard!

Skorpa island

Olav has a project where he will visit all peaks (with a prominence of > 100m) that he can see from Sukkertoppen peak in Ålesund, and take a picture of Sukkertoppen from these peaks. I have previously helped him in identifying the 109 peaks and he is in the finish race of completing his goal.

Torill is a dear friend and we’ve been on some most excellent trips together in the past – which includes ascents of Romsdalshorn and Stetind. So it was really nice to have a chance to meet old friends and visit Keipen again – the highest peak on Skorpa island. And not to forget – Keipen was the only peak in the Ytre Søre Sunnmøre region that my dog Karma hadn’t been to…

We met Vidar at the harbor on Nerlandsøya and were “seaborne” a little bit later. We had a nice ride to Skorpa, where navigation in the shallow waters requires a great deal of knowledge and experience.

On the way to new adventures…

All thanks to Vidar, this was my 3rd time on Skorpa. My dream is to kayak out here in the winter, with my Telemark skies on the kayak and have an epic ski descent here out in “the wild”. But today, the ascent would be on foot…

Arriving on Skorpa island

Olav was nervous about the fog, as the trip wouldn’t be perfect if he couldn’t take a picture of Sukkertoppen. Based on the weather so far, he had good reasons to be optimistic.

When we arrived on Keipen summit – exactly 1 hour after leaving the harbor – we thought we could see Sukkertoppen, but the conclusion would have to wait until Photoshop had done some of its magic on the pictures. And later in the afternoon, Photoshop didn’t let us down…

It was good to be back on Keipen! The views, which offers an unbroken chain of peaks from Runde to Stad, are just awesome!

View from Skorpa

As the sea looked rather calm, Vidar asked if we were interested in visiting the island Svinøya. My heart skipped a number of beats, as I hadn’t really thought I would ever get to this remote island – located 12,2km west of Keipen summit. We were of course all in favor of this generous proposal!

Svinøya seen from Skorpa

On the way down, we suddenly felt a strange scent that I assumed had to come from a dead goat (wild goats live on this island). I told Karma to locate this animal (find!!), and without ever having been trained on this, she ran directly down to the top of a steep cliff. I was worried that she would fall down and called her back to me.  But when we got to the bottom of the cliffs, I found the dead goat underneath the cliff. It was not a pretty sight. The goat had certainly not taken a fall. I guess it just crawled under there to die…

Back in the boat, we drove through Skorpesundet and aimed for Svinøya. The sea was not as calm as we had thought it would be, but as long as Vidar was OK with the sea, we were happy too. Okay, I admit it. I am a chicken at sea. There’s no hiding in case of an accident. In the mountains, I can always find some kind of shelter and survive a blizzard. But the sea is quite unforgiving and it’s something I’m too well aware of…

On the way to Svinøya

The distance at sea is hard to predict. At one point, I told Torill that we had 7km to go. She was surprised, as the island seemed close. A bit later, I told her we had 4km to go and the island looked exactly as close (or far away) as earlier.

Eventually, we got there. Vidar had been on the island before and stayed in the boat with Karma. Anchoring up here isn’t straightforward. Getting on shore isn’t straightforward either, if you want to avoid the boat hitting into the pier.

About to enter Svinøya

Torill, Olav and I climbed up the ladder and went up to the lighthouse, and hereby claiming to have been on – or above – the highest point on the island. What a privilege to be here! Many, many thanks to Vidar for taking us here!

In a very exclusive place!

We didn’t stay long and returned to the pier. Vidar picked us up and sat course for Runde island. The rest of us had never been below the bird mountain on Runde. I’ve been many times on top, but being underneath is a quite different experience!

Quite impressive…

After a heap of pictures, Vidar sat course back to Nerlandsøya. A very nice, 53,8km trip (mostly in the boat) was over and there were smiles all over the place…

Happy people, leaving Runde

Pictures from the trip:

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